Labor is pleased that life-changing drugs to treat cystic fibrosis and lung cancer have finally been recommended for Government subsidy – and calls on Minister Hunt to move quickly to deliver affordable access.
The independent experts of the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC) have today recommended Orkambi and Keytruda (for lung cancer) be listed on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS). Labor also welcomes the positive recommendations for drugs that treat a range of other conditions.
Cost currently puts these drugs out of the reach of most patients. The price tag of Orkambi – a revolutionary drug that was rejected for subsidy three times – is more than $250,000 per person per year.
A PBS listing would improve and save lives by making these drugs affordable for everyone who needs them.
Labor is calling on Minister Hunt to announce their PBS listing without delay.
Lung cancer and cystic fibrosis sufferers have been waiting on these drugs for years as the drug manufacturers negotiated with the PBAC.
They should not be forced to wait any longer.
Labor wrote to the Government last year to press the case for Orkambi’s inclusion on the PBS.
This Government has been delaying PBS listings by months and sometimes even years. In their most recent August listing round, one drug had been waiting 13 months for subsidy.
Orkambi and Keytruda are too important to be subjected to a similar fate.
FRIDAY, 17 AUGUST 2018